OPCs & Prostate Health

Are all Prostate Troubles the Same?
There are three categories of prostate trouble: prostatitis, an inflammation of the gland; benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate that usually begins in middle age; and prostate cancer.

Inflammation of the Prostate (Prostatitis)
Prostatitis, literally meaning inflammation of the prostate, is a very general term covering a number of different kinds of conditions that are not life threatening but nevertheless are potentially very painful and aggravating. The simplest form of prostatitis is a mild, non-infectious irritation known as, prostatodynia, which can often be linked to stress and is generally treated with anti-inflammatory medications or muscle relaxants. More frequently, prostatitis results from an infection caused by microorganisms that travel up the urethra from the penis. In many cases both the prostatic urethra and the prostate are infected by these microorganisms; in some cases, only the prostatic urethra is actually infected, but the condition is still considered to be prostatitis.

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, ( BPH )
(Enlarged Prostate)

An estimated 20 million men, most of them over the age of sixty, have an enlarging prostate, making it the most common medical problem plaguing older men... According to a panel of nationally recognized experts, BPH (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia) affects the quality of life rather than the quantity of life.

What Causes BPH? Exactly why the prostate begins to enlarge after years of no growth remains a mystery.
Some men -- either fearing that their BPH might be prostate cancer or just wanting to avoid the nuisance of medical intervention -- try ignoring the difficulties of BPH as long as they can, which only makes matters worse.

Cancer and Free Radicals
Environmental chemicals, substances that are foreign to the body or xenobiotics (including those found in cigarette smoke and in food), have been linked to the causation of a majority of human cancers. Such cancer-causing chemicals (carcinogens) are believed to induce cancer by a two-stage process, namely initiation and promotion.

OPC's Cancer-Causes:
OPC is a powerful antioxidant free radical scavenger and is a prime candidate for further studies in cancer prevention and therapy. This complex contains proanthocyanidins formed from catechin and epicatechin units. Certain catechin derivatives have recently been shown to have potent anticancer effects in experimental animals.

These chemical substances are thought to be activitiated to potentially noxious intermediate forms by certain enzymes which catalyze the oxidation of these chemicals. The intermediate forms bind firmly and irreversibly to DNA, the genetic material of a target cell, leading to certain changes in DNA. These mutations passed on to other cells when the original cell divides. This sets off the process of initiation. Once cancer is initiated, it can be promoted by a number of factors, such as: other potentially toxic chemicals, fats, reactive oxygen species (ROS) including free radicals and others.

We are equipped with a wide range of antioxidant defense systems, including the contribution of dietary antioxidants (both vitamin and nonvitamin antioxidant nutrients) in order to defend against ROS.

Masqueliers OPCs is a patented blend of flavinols, primarily bioflavinoids, found in fruits, vegetables and other plants. It works synergystically with Vitamin C, acting as a "helpmate" and enhancing its activity.

You may recall how enzymes may be involved in converting cancer causing chemicals to active forms in the cells which can initiate cancer. Flavonoids can interfere with the activity of these enzymes thus providing an ameliorative effect. Certain flavonoids also abolish tumor promotion mediated by tumor promoters. In these cases the flavinoids' effects could be due to its influence on key enzymes as well as interference with free-radical production caused by the promoters.

In addition to their cancer-preventing effect, flavonoids can also be useful in the treatment of fully progressed cancers. Several studies showed that dietary administration of certain flavonoids significantly halted the growth of cancers in laboratory animals. In these studies, cells from human tumors were allowed to grow in the animals and the effect of administration of the flavonoid on the growth of the cancer cells was evaluated. Certain flavonoids also were effective in stopping the spread of tumors (metastis) in animals.

Studies conducted in the laboratory of Dr. Kandaswana indicate that certain flavonoids, orally administered to rats can induce hepatic enzymes that are involved in the metabolic transformation of certain carcinogens. Furthermore, liver preparations prepared from animals that were fed food flavinoids showed a reduced capacity to convert chemical carcinogens to their active forms. In other studies, we implanted tumor cells derived from human pharynx, from several cancers including: cancer of the pharynx, breast cancer, colon cancer, leukemia, brain cancer (gliosarcoma) and others.

As an antioxidant, OPC, reduces free radical-caused tissue damage many times more effective than vitamin E, potentates the health giving effects of vitamin C, and protects brain and nerve tissue with its nearly unique ability to penetrate the blood brain barrier (BBB). It also reduces inflammation and improves circulation, both relieving the distresses of arthritis, diabetes and stroke and promoting prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer. And its ability to bond to collagen promotes renewed youthfulness , flexibility and body integrity.

Although we have traced the history of OPCs through more than 450 years, and although it has been used for decades, it seems destined to wider popularity and utility as researchers understand more about it. We have just scratched the surface.

Nutritional Treatment Consuming supplemental antioxidants such as carotenes, flavonoids, vitamin C and E, zinc and selenium (Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, Michael Murray, N.D. and Joseph Pizzorno, N.D.)

Common protective antioxidant nutrients include vitamins A, C, E and new evidence is mounting that OPC, may prove to be just as important.

Free Radical Antagonist and Vitamin C Potentiator

(1) reduces free-radical-caused tissue damage many times more effectively than vitamin E, potentates the health-giving effects of vitamin C, and protects brain and nerve tissue with its nearly unique ability to penetrate the blood-brain barrier.

(2) It also reduces inflammation and improves circulation, both relieving the distresses of arthritis, diabetes and stroke and promoting prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

(3) And its ability to bond to collagen promotes renewed youthfulness, flexibility and body integrity -- even allowing it to function as an "oral cosmetic".

OPC is especially good at neutralizing the hydroxyl radical, the superoxide radical, singlet oxygen, and the dangerous chemical peroxynitrate.

What makes peroxynitrateso dangerous is that it reacts with anything: fats, proteins, DNA, membrane, et cetra. It doesn't really matter what - peroxynitrate reacts with! Excessive nitric oxide production is associated with arthritis, diabetes, stroke, septic shock, chronic inflammation, and atherosclerosis. The damage it does can easily lead to gene mutations, which replicate themselves as the beginnings of cancer.

The good news is that OPC is great at neutralizing peroxynitrate. It also reduces the amount of superoxide available that makes peroxynitrate and it helps to regulate the nitric oxide production so that it stays in balance. That means your immune system works better, your joints hurt less, and your blood flows better, all because of OPC's.

Other antioxidants may help, but presently researchers have only noticed OPC's working on this problem.

Researchers found out that... even when the immune system was barely working, OPC's brought it back.